Tying it all together, a new theme is born

So last night I’m looking over other people’s portfolios to see how they are progressing, and seriously telling myself I have to get a move on getting mine more in order. It doesn’t help that I don’t have much artistic talent or an eye for these things (not feeling sorry for myself, just stating a fact!). But it was hard to refrain from feeling just a tiny bit jealous of how nice some of the work looked.

But lets be honest. My hand writing will never be anything other than a notation and prompting aid for my own use. A computer and printer is a must! I also wanted to have a theme to help tie in all of the stuff we have to do on the course in a fun way. I decided I should get myself more in character, and pretend to be a Dior inspired customer. Not one who could afford an original piece, but someone who could go and get a copy made. This would of course entail a journey of consideration to decide on the perfect design (which I also have to do, happy coincidence!) and also hopefully help inspire me to look at things with a fresh pair of eyes.

So here is the intro, without further ado:


My name is Lady Cynthia Amberley, and I live in London. I’ve just finished my final year at the Institute Villa Pierrefeu in Switzerland. It is a finishing school to help me learn the final social touches before making a good match. My parents expect me to find someone of a similar social standing (with regards to income and title) and of course I shall do my best to fulfil their wishes in this.

The last years have not been easy, what with all the rebuilding after the war. I know so many poor women had to work and contribute to the war efforts, but they don’t have to any more, and can enjoy the comforts of family and home once more.

I feel I can finally focus on enjoying myself a bit more. I have not had the opportunity to indulge my passion for fashion and new clothes, what with the rationing system so only recently being finally finished. But now that’s all by the by, my parents have said I can go shopping for a new dress!

I hardly know where to start, but must confess one designer in particular has inspired me. His name is Christian Dior, and he is all the rage in France right now. Alas, I cannot possibly persuede my father to agree to buy me an actual original Dior dress, but I can find something I really love and have a copy custom made for the perfect fit. I’ll have to choose fabric, design, decoration and colour…..

There’s so many social events in my diary, I better get started! I will need to draw on all my recent fashion know how to help me get the best possible outcome.

I recently went on a family holiday to Venice – I must consider the lace I saw there. Oh, and not forgetting the beautiful Murano beads either. Or maybe I should choose something with embroidery instead? Decisions, decisions….

One thing I know for certain, I’ll need to get some measurements taken so the seamstresses can draft my dress for me and ensure a good fit.

So, let me make a list to help me organise myself.

A look at different types of embroidery, lace and beading to see if any in particular catches my eye. I’ll need to see some samples of course.
Have my measurements taken and get some basic options made up for a skirt, easy and close fitting bodice (more likely to be close fitted, but capes are coming in to fashion) and of course ensure the sleeves fit me too.
I may well go for something with lots of draping. So worth investigating that possibility too….
Familiarise myself with all of the many style options. Due to fabric rationing I really haven’t been able to consider many different choices until now, so this is quite exciting!
But of course I must not forget the finer details which take the overall look from mundane to amazing. So a consideration of hems, buttons and decorative finishes (amongst many others) is a must.

I do appreciate not all of you dear readers may be as familiar with all of these discriptions as I am. Fear not! If you would like more information about a particular technique or process, I shall ensure further details are available each step of the way.

and finally some pictures of the portfolio in process. Note it needs a LOT more work before its done!



















About sewwherenext

A few years ago I signed up for a year long beginner's dressmaking course. I have never looked back and am always thinking about my next project, hence the sew where next? name. This blog is to try and keep track of my trials, tribulations and hopefully successful projects.

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